Saturday, September 30, 2006

"If nominated, I will..."

Last night, I was surfing through the stats on this blog, which of course is something I rarely do. I post for the exercise and the love of truth with little thought to who is reading or why, except, you know, for the part where I can't understand why nobody at linked to my post below about the American military interrogator who became a conscientious objector, and yes Jim, your response to that post was thoughtful and I'm working on a response which I'll post as soon as you respond to my response about why Hugh Hewitt is such a bad guy despite the fact that he was nice to you.

Anyway, as I said, I was making a rare trip through the stats and saw that last night at 10:02pm, somebody using a internet connection in Seattle came to this blog via Google using the search term "bob ramsey presidential candidate".

I have to say I'm flattered, and that I haven't really given it much thought. I mean, I have thought a great deal about how we would be much better off without our current President, but I haven't really thought about being President. I mean, I do daydream from time to time, and the other day I spent about five minutes thinking about what I would be saying if I were in Phil Angelides place running for Governor against Arnold Schwarzenegger rather than the awful campaign he's been running, but not about President.

But, if you guys really want me to, I'll at least think about it.

And a footnote: The Blogger spell check feature recognizes "Schwarzeneggar" but not "Angelides". Hmm.


Captain GoBart said...

Bob Ramsey for President! I'm in!

As to HH, I do not find him as bad a guy as you do. I think HH is a partisan, but the president is not above criticism from HH. The president's proposal for immigration reform was regularly pounded by HH. Still, for HH, the president is his guy, so he is supportive.

I do find that Hugh can sometimes be over the top, and his lack of spell-checking drives me crazy. In some interviews, he is not a good listener, and really seeks to make a point, sometimes at the expense of a called/interviewee.

I don't find Hugh as crass as the Air America folks, nor nearly as crass, vulgar, and strident as the Daily Kos folks. He is probably as partisan as Talking Points Memo, in my opinion, from the other side. (And I read TPM regularly, too.)

As to Powerline, I suppose it is a Minnesota thing. Growing up in a deep blue household, finding some more conservative folks from MN has been a revelation. I never knew any. I also find the Powerline folks pretty well reasoned, with lots of links to sources.

As you know, I am also a fan of Dennis Prager. And even Dennis has his moments. Still, I have learned a lot from him. One of his ideas is that liberals think that conservatives are evil, and conservatives think liberals are wrong. I find it unfortunate when HH labels people "nutters" or from "the fever swamp", as this is a shorthand way of devaluing an opponent and their viewpoint. But calling the president "Hitler" or a "chimp", and crediting vile and evil motives to the president and the administration for certain behaviors does exactly the same thing. In my reading of Powerline and listening to Prager, I have yet to hear them disparage someone personally in that way. But my knowledge is not encyclopedic, and I may only hear what I want to hear.

The way in which we disagree is a sensitive issue for me. And from what I read, I find progressive folks far more ready to make personal attacks and innuendo on their opponents than folks on the "right." Then again, I don't read much of the fire-breathing right. I do cringe at personal attack by anyone, as it obscures the issue(s).

When the Hollywood Presbyterian thing blew up last year, I knew something about each side of the issue. And I also knew that the issue was much more complex than the soundbites emerging from the presbytery or the Layman. And that was a small issue. National and global issues are even more complicated than can be encapsuled by snarky soundbites.

What I hope evolves in the blogosphere is a place where genuine dialogue occurs. The gossip and innuendo that passes as truth on both sides of the debate are only talking points, and don't serve to increase understanding nor tolerance. Remember, I went to Berkeley, and while I was more "liberal" when I was there, I saw conservative students just ravaged for having a non-PC view of things, and for asking questions that were non-PC. I am sure your experience in red Glendora is significantly different.

For example, with Woodwards's new book, I am sure the "left" will use it to savage the administration, believing it all to be true because it makes their point. The "right", I am afraid, will circle the wagons and defend the administration and/or savage Woodward for being a hack. This gets us nowhere except deeper in our own little ruts.

In my own denomination, I constantly hear the ravings of those who are for "peace" as they villify anyone connected to the administration, projecting evil motives upon them. I also see folks who oppose these supposed peacemakers doing the very same thing in reverse. I am not sure this is what Jesus meant by being a peacemaker. Sometimes I think those who speak "truth to power" are simply dissatisfied and want to rant and vent, and are looking for any excuse to do so. Would that the call of Christ supercede any sort of political loyalty, and the truth would be supreme. But truth these days, from Iraq, to WMD's, to Enron, to stolen elections, to you name it, seems to be in the eye of the beholder.

Maybe that's not very satisfying, but it is what it is. Sorry this is so long, Bobert. Keep on blogging!

Johan Maurer said...

OK, I posted that item about our opponents citing our faith to our faces, to

Bob Ramsey said...

OK, Jim, I'm not sure why you posted this here and not at your own blog, but here goes.

You say you don't like bad discourse. Neither do I.

Sure, Powerline and Hewitt cite "facts", but they do it propagandistically. They differ with the President and the Republicans only on matters which will not endanger the Republican hold on the Presidency and the Congress. They destroy discourse because they know if they can reduce everything to shouting and anger, their side wins.

But the key issue here is your analogies. If you think that Josh Marshall and Hugh Hewitt are rough equivalents, then your instruments need recalibration. Seriously. Have you read Hewitts sickening interview with the "journalist" who had just sat in on an interrogation at Guantanamo? That interivew is not the work of a partisan. That's the work of a bad man.

forrest said...

More re comment one: Why is it somehow wrong to attribute bad motives to the front man for a cabal who do bad things? Would it be kinder of us to simply attribute incompetence to our mad boy emperor? This is not being "personal;" it is being accurate in an impolite manner. There is simply no way polite enough for pointing out that the wolf in your Grandma's bed is not your Grandma.

I have not noticed any reluctance for right-wing people to call their opponents "evil;" I suppose it's a tactical choice as to who is easiest fitted with horns and who with a dunce cap.

"Dialogue" between propagandists and people? Dialogue happens where words are pointers to objective phenomena, not weapons. We in the reality-based community will never be "peaceful" enough for this regime's supporters and dupes until we're dead.

Can we please talk about deliberate, brutal military aggression, not table manners? Wake up and smell the corpses!